Anyone who talks about the golden days of their childhood clearly wasn’t ever a kid. Calvin and Hobbes is a good old-fashioned feel good newspaper comic strip about a 6 year old and his stuffed tiger, Hobbes. It mainly deals with one shot gags but occasionally develops storylines as well. The artwork is superb, and when Bill Watterson does cute you know about it, he could just draw Hobbes in different poses and costumes for 4 panels every strip, not even make the attempt at slipping a joke in, and it would still be worth reading. Seriously, do an image search for him and you’ll see what I mean.
I don’t know what it is about it that makes me like it, sure there’s the odd joke that’s laugh-out-loud-in-a-crowded-terminal-illness-hospital-ward funny, but it’s far from the best comic around. Even just sticking to newspaper printed ones you’ve got Dilbert and The Far Side both providing a consistently better standard of humour (I don’t demand that anyone share my opinions), but it’s just somehow got something that other comics lack, (with the particular exception of Ozy and Millie, which begins where Calvin and Hobbes peaked) a kind of charm that you can’t help but smile at.
Probably the combination of recognisable childhood experience and the ideas we all have about what it ought to have been like being a kid. Or maybe it’s just because Hobbes is super huggable and bouncy, he’s got the most infectious grin.
In summary, Calvin and Hobbes is a comic well worth acquainting yourself with, next to O&M it’s my favourite one to read when I’m feeling down. But before you go looking for it I really have to recommend that you check out Ozy and Millie first. It’s free, and the full archives are available online to browse or to download in handy (tyrannosaurus) bite-sized chunks. Lots of the humour is pretty similar, particularly in the early comics, so even if you have an aversion to webcomics it’s worth spending a few minutes there for try before you buy purposes.